Ken Olson will speak at the Southwest Harbor Public Library on Nov. 1. PHOTO COURTESY OF SWH LIBRARY

Katahdin Woods and Waters talk planned



SOUTHWEST HARBOR — Ken Olson, past president and CEO of Friends of Acadia, will give a talk about Maine’s new national monument at the Southwest Harbor Public Library on Tuesday, Nov. 1, at 5:30 p.m.

On Aug. 24, President Barack Obama proclaimed a Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, adding to Maine’s national park units: the Appalachian National Scenic Trail, St. Croix National Historic Site and Acadia National Park. Olson was among the hundreds of volunteers and thousands of supporters who worked to bring about the monument.

With visuals, Olson’s talk will be an open conversation about the northern park as a Maine recreation asset and a national destination. He will compare the origins of Acadia and Baxter State Park and offer thoughts on the national monument’s future.

Olson wrote “Acadia National Park: A Centennial Celebration” (2016) with Tom Blagden. Their previous collaboration, “First Light” (2003), won a National Outdoor Book Award.

While he led Friends of Acadia, the nonprofit organization established Acadia as the first national park to have an endowed trail system, banned jet skis from Mount Desert Island, co-created the Island Explorer bus, quadrupled Friends of Acadia’s investments to $18 million and granted $1 million yearly to park and community projects.

Before his tenure at FOA, Olson headed the AMC Hut System in New Hampshire’s White Mountains, directed The Nature Conservancy of Connecticut, was president of American Rivers and held faculty lectureships at Yale and Wesleyan. He has received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Natural Resources Council of Maine, was named an honorary ranger by Acadia National Park and was granted an honorary degree from College of the Atlantic for “outstanding contributions to human ecology.” Olson holds a graduate degree from Yale in natural resources management.

This program is an Acadia Centennial event. Call the library at 244-7065.

 

 

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